Maharashtra is expected to face a milk shortage starting today as farmer organisations went on a strike on Sunday midnight, demanding a
hike of Rs 5 per litre in its procurement price.
"Farmers sell milk to dairies at Rs 17 per litre. After processing it, the dairies package it in pouches and sell it at a minimum rate of Rs 42 per litre. The difference in earnings has not been passed on to the farmer," Lok Sabha MP Raju Shetti said today.
"Milk supply to Pune and Mumbai is going to be suspended from midnight. We have to press for our demands because the state government is not taking any concrete decision to increase farmers income," Shetti, chief of the Swabhimani Shetkari Sanghatana, said.
He said that procurement prices of milk should be immediately hiked by Rs 5.
Ajit Nawale of the Akhil Bharatiya Kisan Sabha said that the agitation would intensify further if the state government failed to procure milk at higher prices or did not give special subsidy to milk farmers.
The Ahmednagar police, meanwhile, has issued a notice to Nawale asking him not to enter the district in order to avoid law and order problems.
As many as 55 lakh milk pouches are sold in Mumbai every day with Gujarat-based Amul having the highest marketshare of 30 per cent followed by Kolhapur-based Gokul, said Dairy department officials.
Even though the strike is expected to hit milk supply in the state, officials said Mumbai has a two-day buffer stock for usage.
(With PTI inputs)